ABOUT US

ABOUT US

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Experience the Transformation

Begin by standing tall and focusing on yourself in the mirror. Next, a deep breathing exercise to connect your mind with your body. As your body slowly warms, the sweat will begin to flow. Keep breathing! If you listen carefully, work honestly and try the right way, you will develop discipline, patience and courage. You will realign and balance your body and come closer to your true self. Yoga can change the way you think about everyday things – change your mind, heal your body, and change your life! Yoga can show you the way.

The Benefits of Stretching

Stretching will make you more flexible, but you do not have to be flexible to receive the powerful health benefits of yoga. Yoga poses are simply the medium by which internal organs are stimulated to promote general health and well being. As flexibility improves, so does the potential for internal change. Over time, you’ll gain self-knowledge and a deeper understanding of your Whole Self. Yoga may seem strange at first but keep trying. With a bit of practice it will become very natural, and intrinsically rewarding. Besides all that, it just feels good!

The Benefits
of Stretching

Stretching will make you more flexible, but you do not have to be flexible to receive the powerful health benefits of yoga. Yoga poses are simply the medium by which internal organs are stimulated to promote general health and well being. As flexibility improves, so does the potential for internal change. Over time, you’ll gain self-knowledge and a deeper understanding of your Whole Self. Yoga may seem strange at first but keep trying. With a bit of practice it will become very natural, and intrinsically rewarding. Besides all that, it just feels good!

The Benefits of the Heat

1) Heat allows your muscles to stretch safely and joints to move more freely.
2) Heat increases metabolism assisting with weight loss & weight maintenance.
3) Elevated core temperatures help immune cells work better at fighting viral and bacterial infections before they take hold.
4) Heat causes vasodialation allowing arteries and veins to relax and widen. This widening results in less vascular resistance which is particularly powerful in treating hypertension.
5) Exercise in the heat increases plasma volume and triggers the body to produce more oxygen carrying red blood cells. This allows us to perform normal activities more easily and/or increase athletic performance when looking for a competitive edge.

The Benefits
of the Heat

1) Heat allows your muscles to stretch safely and joints to move more freely.
2) Heat increases metabolism assisting with weight loss & weight maintenance.
3) Elevated core temperatures help immune cells work better at fighting viral and bacterial infections before they take hold.
4) Heat causes vasodialation allowing arteries and veins to relax and widen. This widening results in less vascular resistance which is particularly powerful in treating hypertension.
5) Exercise in the heat increases plasma volume and triggers the body to produce more oxygen carrying red blood cells. This allows us to perform normal activities more easily and/or increase athletic performance when looking for a competitive edge.

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Our teachers and our staff

Our teachers
and our staff

All of our teachers are certified yoga professionals and love to share their knowledge. By focusing on just one method our instructors build expertise, depth and craftsmanship in one classical, time-tested posture series.
Leslie

Studio Owner/Instructor
Being the owner/director of Sweet Heat Hot Yoga is a culmination of my 25 year pursuit to help people preserve good health and vitality. I have a BS in kinesiology from San Diego State University, have been an ACSM-Certified Exercise Physiologist since 1999, and graduated from Bikram’s teacher training in Fall, 2000. At Sweet Heat Hot Yoga we take a decidedly western approach to the practice of yoga.

I began doing yoga 18 years ago as a cross-training vehicle to give my body a rest from other athletic pursuits. What I received in return for my efforts surpassed what I thought was possible from a yoga class. I learned to be a better person; to live in the world with honesty and integrity. Please come join us to learn, grow, and explore your inner world in ways you may have never considered.

Frances

Instructor
From my very first class I envisioned myself teaching Bikram yoga. My journey began at Mount Madonna Retreat Center in the fall of 2013, when I became a 200-hour registered Ashtanga instructor through the Yoga Alliance. I lived in a tent in the woods for a month while studying classical yoga asana, philosophy and pranayama. In 2014 I completed my nine-week Bikram certification in Thailand. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done…including childbirth four times without drugs!

What most moves me about this yoga asana is how our practice relates to life off the mat. Bikram combines the sacred sweat—which has been utilized since the beginning of time to purge and transform—along with the practice of yoga that takes the mind, body and spirit on a journey within. This healing power is the magic of hot yoga. I’m honored to be part of this yoga community and the evolution of the studio that inspired the change within myself. What is your story? Bring it on the mat and share it. ~Namaste

Judy

Instructor
Judy Refuerzo was not always a yoga teacher; she worked for 20 years in the semiconductor industry. She started doing Bikram yoga to relieve stress and stay in shape. She was on a business trip 9/11/2001 and that is when it hit home that life is short and you need to follow your passion. She loved Bikram yoga but felt a need to explore the wide range of yoga options. In 2003 she completed a Yoga Alliance 200 hour teachers certification from the Carmel Yoga Center. It was a great introduction to the many styles of yoga, but deep in her heart Judy knew her calling was Bikram yoga. In January of 2004 she moved to LA for 9 weeks to study with Bikram Choudhury and received her teachers certification. Judy wants to share the physical and mental healing of Bikram yoga with everyone. It is more than getting fit and having a good body, it’s about learning to listen to your body, realizing you are stronger than you think and following your heart.
Leslie

Studio Owner/Instructor
Being the owner/director of Sweet Heat Hot Yoga is a culmination of my 25 year pursuit to help people preserve good health and vitality. I have a BS in kinesiology from San Diego State University, have been an ACSM-Certified Exercise Physiologist since 1999, and graduated from Bikram’s teacher training in Fall, 2000. At Sweet Heat Hot Yoga we take a decidedly western approach to the practice of yoga.
I began doing yoga 18 years ago as a cross-training vehicle to give my body a rest from other athletic pursuits. What I received in return for my efforts surpassed what I thought was possible from a yoga class. I learned to be a better person; to live in the world with honesty and integrity. Please come join us to learn, grow, and explore your inner world in ways you may have never considered.
Frances

Instructor
From my very first class I envisioned myself teaching Bikram yoga. My journey began at Mount Madonna Retreat Center in the fall of 2013, when I became a 200-hour registered Ashtanga instructor through the Yoga Alliance. I lived in a tent in the woods for a month while studying classical yoga asana, philosophy and pranayama. In 2014 I completed my nine-week Bikram certification in Thailand. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done…including childbirth four times without drugs!

What most moves me about this yoga asana is how our practice relates to life off the mat. Bikram combines the sacred sweat—which has been utilized since the beginning of time to purge and transform—along with the practice of yoga that takes the mind, body and spirit on a journey within. This healing power is the magic of hot yoga. I’m honored to be part of this yoga community and the evolution of the studio that inspired the change within myself. What is your story? Bring it on the mat and share it. ~Namaste

Judy

Instructor
Judy Refuerzo was not always a yoga teacher; she worked for 20 years in the semiconductor industry. She started doing Bikram yoga to relieve stress and stay in shape. She was on a business trip 9/11/2001 and that is when it hit home that life is short and you need to follow your passion. She loved Bikram yoga but felt a need to explore the wide range of yoga options. In 2003 she completed a Yoga Alliance 200 hour teachers certification from the Carmel Yoga Center. It was a great introduction to the many styles of yoga, but deep in her heart Judy knew her calling was Bikram yoga. In January of 2004 she moved to LA for 9 weeks to study with Bikram Choudhury and received her teachers certification. Judy wants to share the physical and mental healing of Bikram yoga with everyone. It is more than getting fit and having a good body, it’s about learning to listen to your body, realizing you are stronger than you think and following your heart.
Melinda

Instructor
Hello yogis. I completed teacher training in 2010 and have been teaching at studios in the South Bay since then. I believe that these 26 asanas and two breathing techniques which we practice are life changing. So much is accomplished in 90 minutes in the hot room. Our bodies and minds change as we dedicate ourselves to returning to the mat over and over again. I practice meditation (zen/vipassana). For me this is a perfect compliment to the series. Bringing mind into body using the breath is beautiful.

I enjoy hiking, swimming in the ocean, boogie boarding and taking care of two goats, two puppies and one husband. I look forward to meeting you all in the Sweet Heat room. Namaste, Melinda.

Ashley

Instructor
My name is Ashley. I graduated from Bikram teacher training in Fall 2014. I recertified in the summer of 2017. I have a strong passion for this yoga and I am eager to share it with you!
Janie

Instructor
I’ve been practicing Bikram Yoga for 10 years, first arriving in the hot room to explore healing options for my injured runner’s joints (hips, knees, low back), while maintaining a challinging physical workout. This powerful series of asanas offered me both, and much more. In fact, the studio quickly became my favorite place, a consistent high point of my day, and I strive to maintain that magical yoga practice feeling (uplifted and grounded, strong and relaxed focused and peaceful) when I walk out the door.

I recently completed my teacher training in September of 2018 and I’m deeply honored and grateful to bear witness and offer support to all students of this practice.

Melinda

Instructor
Hello yogis. I completed teacher training in 2010 and have been teaching at studios in the South Bay since then. I believe that these 26 asanas and two breathing techniques which we practice are life changing. So much is accomplished in 90 minutes in the hot room. Our bodies and minds change as we dedicate ourselves to returning to the mat over and over again. I practice meditation (zen/vipassana). For me this is a perfect compliment to the series. Bringing mind into body using the breath is beautiful.

I enjoy hiking, swimming in the ocean, boogie boarding and taking care of two goats, two puppies and one husband. I look forward to meeting you all in the Sweet Heat room. Namaste, Melinda.

Ashley

Instructor
My name is Ashley. I graduated from Bikram teacher training in Fall 2014. I recertified in the summer of 2017. I have a strong passion for this yoga and I am eager to share it with you!
Janie

Instructor
I’ve been practicing Bikram Yoga for 10 years, first arriving in the hot room to explore healing options for my injured runner’s joints (hips, knees, low back), while maintaining a challinging physical workout. This powerful series of asanas offered me both, and much more. In fact, the studio quickly became my favorite place, a consistent high point of my day, and I strive to maintain that magical yoga practice feeling (uplifted and grounded, strong and relaxed focused and peaceful) when I walk out the door.

I recently completed my teacher training in September of 2018 and I’m deeply honored and grateful to bear witness and offer support to all students of this practice.

Caryn

Boutique Sales
14 years ago, I took my first Hot Yoga class in this very studio! I was so hot that I could not stay in the room. I was so sore, stiff and exhausted after that first class, yet I knew that I was having a ‘hurts so good’ cleansing experience. Although it took 6 months, when I returned to the hot room while vacationing in Massachusetts, I was hooked! I have been practicing regularly ever since. This practice has seen me through three abdominal surgeries and a hip surgery.

Saturdays in the boutique are a lively, dynamic time to work with Leslie reformatting, remerchandising and reordering to keep the boutique fresh and intriguing! Come check it out!!!

When I am not in the yoga studio, I educate first graders, devote volunteer hours to Peace of Mind Dog Rescue, hike, bike, ride my motorcycle, and do some freelance writing for Coastal Canine Magazine.

Jesse

Housekeeping
I’ve been practicing hot yoga since mid 2013, and have been experiencing benefits from day 2. I started rather late in life, so all improvement is a wondrous gift, a tonic against typical “normal” aging in our culture.

My work keeping the studio clean has become an extension of my practice, and keeps me feeling closely connected to the new Sweet Heat Hot Yoga, which feels now almost like home. I’ve retired from full time employment, and also teach Tai Chi at two senior centers on the peninsula.

Mike & Nelson

Maintenance Team
I’ve been doing yoga since 2006 and switched to hot yoga in 2007. I always feel accomplished on the days that I practice, and it compliments the other activities that I like to do.

Currently, I’m trying to train our studio mascot, Nelson, on the fine art of outdoor maintenance. Come by and see us on Saturdays at 11:30 and give us your suggestions on how we can make this place better for you. You can also follow us on Instagram at #Nelsongr8pyr.

Caryn

Boutique Sales
14 years ago, I took my first Hot Yoga class in this very studio! I was so hot that I could not stay in the room. I was so sore, stiff and exhausted after that first class, yet I knew that I was having a ‘hurts so good’ cleansing experience. Although it took 6 months, when I returned to the hot room while vacationing in Massachusetts, I was hooked! I have been practicing regularly ever since. This practice has seen me through three abdominal surgeries and a hip surgery.

Saturdays in the boutique are a lively, dynamic time to work with Leslie reformatting, remerchandising and reordering to keep the boutique fresh and intriguing! Come check it out!!!

When I am not in the yoga studio, I educate first graders, devote volunteer hours to Peace of Mind Dog Rescue, hike, bike, ride my motorcycle, and do some freelance writing for Coastal Canine Magazine.

Jesse

Housekeeping
I’ve been practicing hot yoga since mid 2013, and have been experiencing benefits from day 2. I started rather late in life, so all improvement is a wondrous gift, a tonic against typical “normal” aging in our culture.

My work keeping the studio clean has become an extension of my practice, and keeps me feeling closely connected to the new Sweet Heat Hot Yoga, which feels now almost like home. I’ve retired from full time employment, and also teach Tai Chi at two senior centers on the peninsula.

Mike & Nelson

Maintenance Team
I’ve been doing yoga since 2006 and switched to hot yoga in 2007. I always feel accomplished on the days that I practice, and it compliments the other activities that I like to do.

Currently, I’m trying to train our studio mascot, Nelson, on the fine art of outdoor maintenance. Come by and see us on Saturdays at 11:30 and give us your suggestions on how we can make this place better for you. You can also follow us on Instagram at #Nelsongr8pyr.

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Our studio

Our studio is located at 170 Central Ave in Pacific Grove, across the street from Happy Girl Kitchen.

You’re new to our studio?
Check out our guide for new students.

New Students